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  • Airdrie-Bathgate rail link

    In 2010 we completed a east-west rail link in Scotland – the country’s longest new railway with new stations for over a century

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    Economic benefits for communities and business

    Funded by Transport Scotland, the new 15-mile rail link between Airdrie and Bathgate was completed on time and in budget in late 2010. This £300m project has given people in West Lothian direct rail access to Glasgow and stations west of Glasgow, and people in North Lanarkshire direct access to Edinburgh, for the first time in 50 years.

    Communities along the route now have increased opportunities for work, education and social connections, stimulating economic growth in towns and villages with limited public transport. Employers benefit from a wider labour pool, and everyone benefits from having a greener, faster alternative to car travel.

  • Video - The story of the Airdrie-Bathgate rail link

  • Faster, more direct journeys

    The new rail link has created a faster, more direct route between Edinburgh and Glasgow, with frequent services. For example, people who use Airdrie, Drumgelloch and Bathgate stations can choose from four services an hour during the day, with two an hour after 7.00pm and on Sundays.

    In addition, passengers travelling in the Glasgow direction can go straight on to stations west of Glasgow, including Helensburgh and Milngavie.

    Constructing the new rail link

    We constructed the Airdrie-Bathgate rail link in less than three years, including:

    • Building 15 miles of new, electrified double track between Bathgate and Drumgelloch
    • Double-tracking and electrifying the existing line between Bathgate and Edinburgh, and Airdrie and Drumgelloch
    • Constructing new purpose-built stations at Armadale, Blackridge and Caldercruix
    • Rebuilding and relocating the stations at Bathgate and Drumgelloch
    • Upgrading the stations at Livingston North and Uphall
    • Creating 1,100 new parking spaces at stations on the route, to increase opportunities for park and ride

    A new cycle path

    The old railway between Airdrie and Bathgate closed to passenger trains in 1957 and to freight trains in 1982. The route then became a popular cycle path. When building the new railway, we relocated the cycle path (National Cycle Route 75) in recognition of its importance to cyclists and the communities it passes through.

    Public consultation

    We consulted with local communities from 2004, using a range of channels to keep people informed about the project and to enable them to share their views, including:

    • Distributing 43,000 leaflets and newsletters
    • Targeting 227,000 households with through the door communication
    • Holding 27 public exhibitions which targeted over 20,000 people
    • Organising 44 public meetings involving around 1,115 people
    • Setting up a dedicated website which received more than 200,000 visits
    • Providing an email helpline service which has received around 1,300 public enquiries
    • Managing dedicated helplines which received nearly1,400 calls
    • Issuing more than 70 press releases which resulted in more than 200 items of press and broadcast coverage